Govt Representative Comment on Auctioned Indonesian Islands
TEMPO.CO, Jakarta - A statement by the Maritime Affairs, and Investments Coordinating Minister Luhut Pandjaitan’s spokesperson Jodi Mahardi – initially issued on November 23 – asserting that tropical islands in Indonesia are not permitted to be owned by any private entity has resurfaced after news about an upcoming auction for the development rights of over 100 islands.
“Small islands are only permitted to be managed by certain private sector or individuals under limited areas,” the spokesperson wrote in a statement on November 23.
His statement resurfaced after the Widi Islands, located in North Maluku, were up for auction on a United States-based website, a foreign website Sotheby's Concierge Auctions. Provisions about the development of Indonesian islands are overseen by the Law.
The auctioneer is suspected to be conducted by PT Leadership Islands Indonesia (PT LII) which has the right to develop the island. However, through a recent written statement, LII denied being involved in the auction.
Meanwhile, based on information received by Jodi, the Widi Islands already have management permits between the private sector and the local provincial government. The permit was given to LII in the far past but reportedly has not realized any construction up until news of the auction emerged.
Jodi explained that if a small island management permit has been obtained by a company or a national legal subject, investment cooperation with foreign parties must be carried out in accordance with statutory provisions.
"For those interested in managing, not owning, small island areas, they must obtain permission from the government. If there is a violation of statutory provisions, sanctions may be imposed," he said.
In addition, Jodi emphasized that Indonesia's sovereignty over each and every island within the country's archipelagic borders should not be doubted and has been recognized by the international community.
MOH KHORY ALFARIZI
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